Here are our top 5 tips for getting your baby to sleep for their baby photoshoot. As photographers we have seen parents tearing their hair out trying to get their cranky babies to sleep so thought we would share these ideas. Some say that Chris and I were very lucky that our children were good sleepers. From the age of 6 weeks both were sleeping from 7pm to 7am with just a dream feed at 11pm. Please remember that these tips are from personal experience and those that we have heard from previous clients. They don’t work for everyone, but they are all worth a try!
We quickly developed our own routine for our babies and tried to stick to it where possible. There is no denying that babies thrive on routine and having one will make your lives easier in the long term. There are many books that give you guidelines on a good routine, but generally families find their own and as long as you stick to it, the baby will fall into line.
Young babies love to feel snug and secure
Just like when a they are still in mummy’s tummy, a young baby loves to feel snug and secure. They have spent nine months being protected by you so it’s one hell of a shock to have all this room to move. Making sure they always feel snug allows them to feel calm, thus promoting sleep.
Swaddling & Gro-Bags
Both our kids loved to be swaddled. It mimics the closeness of the womb and suppresses the startle reflex. There is a knack to it, but once you get the hang of it, it becomes second nature. Swaddling babies has been proven to help in them to settle and sleep for longer periods. Some babies seem to struggle or cry when being swaddled and it’s often assumed that this means their baby doesn’t like it. Usually it is because the baby is either overtired or not tired at all and not ready to sleep. It could also be that they are too hot, or the swaddle is not secure enough. I would say that my babies slept better when they were swaddled.
When they are past the swaddling stage, babies tend to kick their blankets off and then become cold and wake up. We discovered Gro-Bags quite early on and never looked back. At the time they were a fairly new invention, but they are now widely available. Like a little sleeping back with a vest attached, it means that they won’t get cold.
Black out blinds
Babies find the dark extremely comforting and from experience will make it easier for your baby to settle, sleep and stay asleep for longer, if they sleep in a dark room. Putting a baby to sleep in the dark promotes the release of the hormone melatonin which is essential to helping your baby to settle and sleep well.
Contrary to popular belief, babies sleep better when there is noise. The noise in the womb is louder than a vacuum cleaner! Using white noise during the day can help your baby sleep for longer and can help block out other household and environmental sounds. The noise should be about as loud as a shower and there are some great apps that now offer a collection of white noise. Spotify and iTunes also have other apps available.
Both of our children had bedtime bears and both still have them. Having a soft toy to snuggle with is part of many bedtime routines. Babies and children find comfort in bedtime bears which can help them to feel calm and thus sleep easier. As we know stress and sleep do not mix, so If a bedtime bed reduces stress it stands to reason they will sleep better. Don’t forget to take pictures of your little one’s bedtime bear – it’s on the Photos you must take of your newborn baby list!
During our newborn shoots we encourage parents to soothe their babies and keep them calm. Those sleepy images in the first few weeks are so precious and it of course helps no end, if you and your baby are well rested.
If you would like to book a newborn or baby shoot with us please contact us here to start your journey.
Would recommend Chrysalis Photography to anyone. Friendly and thoughtful, what could have been a disaster with a 2yr old turned out to be fun and the end result is fab 5 stars from us.